Moai on Easter Island

Moai on Easter Island

Friday, March 20, 2015

Karamea: End of the Road on the West Coast of New Zealand

If you drive far enough north along the remote west coast of New Zealand the road eventually ends in an anti-climatic parking lot.  This is the trailhead for one of the ends of the Heaphy Track.  Luckily we had parked our van here before the hike and caught a bus to the other end of the trail.  We decided to spend a few days exploring the area surrounding the tiny town of Karamea, which sits just a few miles from the end of the road.  Thanks to a guidebook called New Zealand Frenzy we found some beautiful and less touristy places to explore.  This book is now called our New Zealand bible. 
The giant tunnel of Oparara Arch.
Oparara Arch
Caves were the name of the game for most of the exploring around Karamea.  There are a number of caves with glowworms inside.  If you don’t want to pay to go on a guided tour to see these critters then this is the place to go.  Headlamps are a must for getting through these smaller caves.
Glow worms in the Tunnel Cave along the Fenian Caves loop.  

Moria Gate Arch.
There is also a host of giant caves and arches, which I would argue are actually natural bridges, to explore.
Looking out the Moria Gate Arch.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Ben,
    Awesome photos ! I was at Oparara in March 2012 and left my own rock pile at the other site of the arch. I was curious to see if it was still standing. But I think, by the look of your third photo that all rock piles were washed away at some point (mine had a heart-shaped stone on top).
    Have fun !